3 QUESTIONS - 3 ANSWERS
Charlotte dropped three questions on LHL at once recently: what is the
population of Lancashire, what is the largest town in the county and what do
Lancastrians call bread rolls?
Well….I have actually been waiting for some of these questions and of course
there never is a simple answer is there? The difficulty lies in the designation of
what comprises the county of Lancashire, a question made fraught and
complex by the introduction of the Local Government Act of 1972, which on
April Fool’s Day, (an appropriate date nonetheless) 1974, introduced the new
local authorities of Merseyside and Greater Manchester. Now, brushing aside
the mundane wherewithal of local authorities’ internal responsibilities for
public services and the emptying of dustbins etc and even accepting that many
scousers and mancunians no doubt have some form of local identity…… when
Lancashire plays Yorkshire at cricket, which side do these big city inhabitants of
our county relate to and support? I think we all know the answer to that one.
Once this crucial question is answered and confirmed as, ‘Lancashire’, then we
can move on to provide Charlotte with the two different sets of statistics;
bearing in mind that all statistics are prone to irregularities and updates, then
the following approximations hold true:
Statistics 1, not incorporating Merseyside and Greater Manchester: the
population of Lancashire in 2011 was approximately 1,498,300. The largest
town being Bolton with approximately 280,400 people.
Statistics 2, incorporating all Lancastrian towns and cities: the population of
Lancashire in 2011 was 4,942,364. The largest urban sprawl being Greater
Manchester with 2,835,686 people.
As for the bread roll, just like with pies, Lancastrians do appear to become most
guarded and ferociously bias when it comes to naming their foodstuffs. From
Colne in the north east, to Burscough in the south west of the county, the
variation of names given to the humble bread roll can differ markedly from one
village to the next. In our quick ring round survey we uncovered the humble
bread roll was known as; a barm, a bap, a cob, an ovan bottom, a teacake and
a rowie, not to mention a few rather lewd and unpronounceable little
interpretations. Either way, when they are fresh and warm, they are always
great for ‘dunking’ in hot tomato soup or for making great chip butties. What
do you like on your bap Charlotte? Drop us a line anytime!
Peter John Fyles